Macquarie Corporate Telecommunications has become the first Internet data centre in Australia to be SunTone certified, an exclusive and prestigious accreditation process offered by hardware vendor Sun Microsystems.
MCT joins approximately 200 companies worldwide that have been accredited under the process, which evaluates the equipment, processes and skill-sets at a data centre against global standards. Only 13 companies have achieved the accreditation in the Asia-Pacific region.
The SunTone program was established in 1999 by Sun Microsystems, in consultation with its partners and customers, to define best practices for data centres. Customers and partners of Sun Microsystems (most data centres would have some form of Sun technology installed in them) can access a variety of information and resources for free as a registered SunTone member, but they must go to considerable lengths to become certified.
Glen Noble, general manager of Next Generation Integrated Carrier Services at MCT, said the company first went through a self-auditing process to check itself against SunTone documentation. The data centre then sent for an auditor from Sun Microsystems to audit the paperwork and physically inspect the operating data centre to approve the accreditation. While the company had been discussing becoming certified for the better part of a year, the bulk of the necessary work was done over three months by a staff member who managed the documentation and processes on a full-time basis.
"It is a fairly onerous and demanding task," said Noble.
Noble said he is confident the accreditation will yield results. There are many multinational corporations, he said, that insist on a minimum required standard for every nation in which they operate. Being the first accredited data centre in Australia, he is confident that the market will look on MCT as a "pioneer" and continue to trust the company with its data.
"Historically you have a service-level guarantee," he said. "But there are only a finite number of measurables. Global certification alongside [a service-level guarantee] gives the customer a lot of comfort."